Review: Brooklyn Brewery Black Ops (2023)

Review: Brooklyn Brewery Black Ops (2023)

Brooklyn Brewery’s Black Ops is back again in pint-sized cans — again relying on Four Roses barrels to age its hearty Russian Imperial stout for nine months before release.

I found the 2023 expression rather fruitier than prior editions, and quite a bit less fizzy. Brooding with notes of prunes and macerated figs, the beer is as rich and dark as ever — but immersed in a punishing amount of chocolate, dark caramel, and vanilla cream to give all the dark fruits even more of a dessert-like quality. Extremely sweet as it develops in the glass (and warms a bit), the beer slowly converges on something approaching chocolate-covered raisins, with a nod toward Tawny Port. Chewy with overpowering molasses notes and slightly saccharine on the back end, I didn’t get the level of refinement and cohesion from this year’s edition that I’ve experienced in prior offerings.

12% abv.

B+ / $16 per four-pack of 16 oz cans / brooklynbrewery.com

Brooklyn Brewery Black Ops (2023)

$16
8.5

Rating

8.5/10

Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

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